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Hawks Movie Review

dalton edwards anthony janet

In 1969, Timothy Dalton outraged everyone with the statement that he intended to be an even better actor than Laurence Olivier. Hawks is the first time I've been able to agree that Dalton might finally be on the way to achieving that goal. Anthony Edwards and Dalton play two dying patients who escape from a British hospital and steal an ambulance. They flee to the Netherlands for a holiday where they plan to spend their dying days in an Amsterdam whore house. Instead, they meet two English girls in pursuit of a Dutch character who made one of them pregnant. A fine screenplay by Roy Clarke makes Hawks a surprising delight and Robert Ellis Miller's steady, sure direction keeps the whole thing in balance. Anthony Edwards is excellent as the American football player sidelined by illness, but Dalton's performance is a true star turn, packed with charisma, tenderness, vitality, anguish, and humor. It's by far the best thing he's done onscreen. Janet McTeer is wonderful as the awkward unwed mother who towers over and captivates Dalton, and Sheila Hancock is very good as her best friend. Because it's really about life with no holds barred, Hawks is one of the very few films about death that I actually enjoyed and would be willing to see again.

1989 (R) 105m/C GB Anthony Edwards, Timothy Dalton, Janet McTeer, Jill Bennett, Sheila Hancock, Connie Booth, Camille Coduri; D: Robert Ellis Miller; W: Roy Clarke; C: Doug Milsome. VHS, LV, 8mm, Closed Caption

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